RokkinCat to shut down at end of the year

Jason Stiebs, Nick Gartmann and Josh Holtz.
Jason Stiebs, Nick Gartmann and Josh Holtz. Credit: Lila Aryan

Milwaukee-based software development and consulting firm RokkinCat will shut down at the end of the year, according to a message posted on the firm’s website by its founders, Nick Gartmann and Jason Stiebs.

Founded in 2011, the company develops custom software, apps and web products, and over the years had tweaked its business model to include consulting and building software engineering teams for other companies.

“When we started RokkinCat we set out to help more tech startups get off the ground by building low budget prototypes and MVPs. Back then, Milwaukee tech startups had very few options available for getting to market – most development agencies had minimum engagements far above what startups could afford and the local investment community was hesitant to invest in idea-stage technology businesses. In the last 11 years, we created a path forward for around 100 startups that were struggling to find someone to build their MVP. In addition to the founders we got to work with, we gave advice to hundreds more, helping them find ways to discover product market fit,” Gartmann and Stiebs said in their message.

“We are so proud of the work we have done with startups, but we are also happy to see so many more resources available to founders of tech companies. More and more we have found ourselves working with founders that are further along, have customers, have investors, and need less help. The tech and startup communities have been steadily getting better thanks to the incredibly hard work and dedication of other organizations dedicated to the cause, and so we feel RokkinCat’s role in the startup community has become redundant,” they said.

“As we transitioned away from working with startups exclusively, RokkinCat became more centered around our employees and work culture. We set out to build an organization that turned young programmers into practical and adaptable ones, able to confidently step into any situation. Ultimately, we have found that our ambitions for our employees and ourselves exceeds what we think RokkinCat can be the vehicle for,” Gartmann and Stiebs said.

RokkinCat has 10 employees who will be out of a job when the business shuts down at the end of the year. Gartmann and Stiebs said they are “fantastic people…Any company would be lucky to have them on their team.”

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Andrew is the editor of BizTimes Milwaukee. He joined BizTimes in 2003, serving as managing editor and real estate reporter for 11 years. A University of Wisconsin-Madison graduate, he is a lifelong resident of the state. He lives in Muskego with his wife, Seng, their son, Zach, and their dog, Hokey. He is an avid sports fan and is a member of the Muskego Athletic Association board of directors.

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